Saturday, January 21, 2012

A Journey of Epic Proportions

One of my goals last year was to compile all of my Kilimanjaro videos into one. Over Christmas I finally had a chance to sit down and learn how to do this using iMovie. Once I got the hang of it, it wasn't too difficult at all. I'm so happy to have this video to look back on. It was truly a journey of epic proportions! I'm embarrassed because I never realized this before but I am a total up talker. I need to work on that. Oh well. Enjoy the video!

See my other posts about Kilimanjaro here:

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

I Feel Like A New Woman

This past month has been.. how can I describe it? Excruciatingly tiring. Since before Christmas, Little m has been an even more horrible sleeper than usual. We're talking about waking up 4-6 times (or more!) every night, taking no daytime naps, or if I could get her down for a nap, waking up 10 minutes later. I was this close to losingmyshit. I can't begin to tell you how frustrating it is to spend 45 minutes (or more!) trying to get her to sleep, then having her wake up as soon as she hit the crib sheet. Rinse and repeat. I would spend my entire days trying to get this girl to sleep. Something had to be done or I was about to send myself to crazy town for an extended vacation.

All I could think to do was begin sleep training. I was wracked with guilt and it's so painful listening to your baby cry but I feel like I had no choice. Last night was night number three and holy moly I feel like a new woman because I got 5.5 hours of sleep.. like I mean.. in a row. In one chunk. At one time. Plus another 3 on top of that! I almost jumped for joy when I layed the peanut down after feeding her and she turned her head, closed her eyes, and went to sleep. IT'S A MIRACLE!!! I'm ecstatic if you couldn't tell.

I am a much happier person after getting sleeping, mostly because sleep is so freakin good but also because Little m is happier and well rested! I can't help but share some pictures I took earlier this week because they're so darn cute. I love this little girl but I love her even more when she lets me sleep!
My mom's friend sent us this cute hat after Little m was first born and it finally fits! Thanks Mo!

Saturday, January 14, 2012

36 in 356: 2012 Edition

As per tradition, here's my list of 36 goals I'd like to accomplish in the 365 days of the new year. I've tried to make my goals more manageable this year and included a few important things I must get done that I've been putting off for years. This is the year, right!?

36 in 365 Goals (Round Four):

Get Busy:
1. Put on a themed 1st birthday party for Little m. I'm feeling rainbows.
2. Take monthly pictures of Little m and blog about her developments (5/12).
3. Comment on someone's blog everyday for three months (3/3).
4. Keep a calendar of Little m's daily occurrences.
5. Read 40 books from my Goodreads list (40/40).
6. Discover three new musical artists (3/3): David Francey, Lauren Hubert, Alabama Shakes
7. See the CTA holiday train in December. 
8. Make ten new savoury recipes (10/10): Santa Fe Casserole(meh), Sesame Green Beans(good), Chicken Parm Meatloaf(YUM), Mexican Lasagna(lacked a little something), Spinach Lasagna Rolls(awesome), Massaged Kale Salad(a-ok), Baked Sweet and Sour Chicken(wowee), Thai Fried Quinoa(not my fave), Oven Roasted Sausages and Peppers(me likee), Vegetable and Edamame Pasta with Basil Cream Sauce(delish)
9. Make five new sweet recipes (5/5): Maple Donuts(delish), Raspberry Donuts(so good), Rainbow Cake(impressive), No-Bake Chocolate Eclaire Cake(very sweet), Funfetti Cake Batter Dip(probably wouldn't make again unless I had another rainbow themed party)
10. Buy a hawt pair of boots.
11. Buy a wall map.
12. Buy a rug.

Get Crafty:
13. If home in the month of December, buy and decorate a real Christmas tree.
14. Add 25 more items to my list of 101 things (32/101) that make me happy (4/25).
15. Make three things from my "For the Home" board on Pinterest (0/3).
16. Make a really cool gift for my Goddaughter's first birthday Christmas.
17. Make a piece of artwork using old passport stamps.
18. Create a wedding album for both sets of parents. For real this time.
19. Make a first year photo canvas for Little m.
20. Frame a wedding photo and hang it up.
21. Start an anniversary scrapbook.

Get Places:
22. Rent Borrow a convertible and drive through California Illinois.
23. Explore three Chicago neighbourhoods (3/3): Ukrainian Village, Roscoe Village, Bucktown
24. Travel to two American states (4/2): Florida, New York, California, Arizona
25. Visit the Chicago Art Institute.
26. Drink myself silly in Sonoma.

Get Healthy (Mentally and Physically):
27. Try to enjoy every moment with Little m, even the really difficult and tiring ones.
28. Make and stick to a dinner meal plan for a week (5/5) and try to continue.
29. Stop letting people and things live rent free in my mind.
30. Take Bama for extra long walks once a week (15/52).
31. Complete Jillian Michael's Ripped in 30.
32. Try the 100 pushup challenge.
33. Try the 100 situp challenge.

Get Giving:
34. Send the great grandparents pictures of Little m more often (3/3).
35. Send my close girlfriends birthday or Christmas cards (4/6).
36. Volunteer once a month (12/12).

Friday, January 13, 2012

2011 Goals... How'd I Do?

Sadly, I didn't do all that well on my 2011 goals. I overestimated my ability to get anything done with a baby in tow. I have a hard enough time eating breakfast before noon on most days.. how I thought I'd have time for anything extra is beyond me! Oh well. I fully completed 21 goals, partially completed 3, and failed miserably at 12. Here's the roundup:

36 in 365 Goals (Round 3)

Get Busy:
1. Leave a comment on someone's blog everyday for two months (2/2).
2. Compile and edit all of my Kilimanjaro videos into one.
3. Blog a total of 200 times throughout the year (83/200).
4. Make Julia Child's boeuf bourguignon.
5. Go to a couple of concerts (2/2): City and Colour, Coheed and Cambria
8. Bake a rainbow cake.

Get Places:
10. Go to Kingston Mines to listen to a blues band.
11. Bring Bama to the dog park more often (11/20).
12. Try two Man Vs. Food restaurants (2/2): Vortex, Lucky's Sandwich Company
13. Go to an outdoor concert in Millenium Park.
14. Explore two different American states (2/2): Atlanta, GA and Cassopolis, MI
15. Attend Chicago summer festivals (2/2): Sheffield Garden Walk, Jazz Fest
17. Ride the ferris wheel at Navy Pier.
18. Visit the Art Institute of Chicago.

Get Giving:
19. Send a birthday card to each of my siblings and parents (9/9).
20. Volunteer in a soup kitchen once a month (12/12).
21. Leave Operation Beautiful notes (10/10).

Get Crafty:
22. Complete a list of 101 things that make me happy (28/101): #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #6,
23. Create a wedding anniversary scrapbook with highlights from each year.
24. Make a piece of artwork using old passport stamps.
25. Create a wedding album for both sets of parents.
26. Buy and decorate a real Christmas tree!
27. Make a special someone a Blurb book.
28. Learn something about photography.

Get Healthy:
30. Floss or use the Oral B cleaner everyday for a month (and try to continue).
31. Skate on the Rideau Canal in February.
32. Complete a 30 day Wii Fit challenge.
33. Take a long bike ride (2/2).
34. Walk to work or anywhere else that's 35-40 minutes each way (10/10).
35. Go rock climbing.
36. Go hiking (2/2): Bloomingdale Trail, Lake Matheson

Better luck next year?

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Month Four With Little m

Wow, I'm so behind! This post has been sitting in my draft box for almost a month, so it's quite outdated, but I figure better late than never. It will be nice to have these monthly updates to look back upon so I must persist.
Little m spent the majority of her fourth month in New Zealand. I must say, she is an amazing traveler. Give me an airplane ride any day over a car ride. Car rides with this darling girl make me want to stab myself in the eye. Maybe one day she will learn to love her car seat, but I don't think it's happening anytime soon.
Her fourth month was my favourite thus far. This little peanut is so smiley and her entire face lights up, making my heart melt. She likes to talk a lot still and one day I heard her say dada, clear as day! Haven't heard it since, but that was fun even if it was a fluke! We think she often looks like a tiny elf. Little m's new favourite thing is being carried around facing outward. She loves looking at the world around her and being her usual nosy self. She's also now beginning to amuse herself and often times we'll lay her on a blanket next to us while we're eating dinner. This is a fantastic relief for me because I can actually have ten minutes to myself a few times a day now! Thanks little one.
At her four month check up she was hovering somewhere around the 9.5 lbs range. Her weight gain is a constant worry for me but she's well on her way to doubling her birth weight so I need to relax a bit. Her sleeping ranges from bad to horrible to okay to awful, but I will get sleep in ohh, 18 years, so I'll survive :)

One thing I know is that no one can understand how difficult being a parent is until they're faced with it. I certainly didn't at least. You take the bad with the good and the good with the bad and all that nonsense. Thank goodness this girl smiles a lot and erases (most) of my frustrations with one big goofy grin.